Co-founded by Boni Love and Saralyn Whitney, YogaFamily is an innovative, family-based yoga studio, focusing on the needs of families at every stage of growth. We offer classes for adults, young people and adults and young people together - at the same time or each in their own classes! We also offer classes that uniquely focus on the needs of families. All of our classes are room temperature.
If you have been wanting quality activities with your family, or feel intimidated by the thought of attending other yoga studios, visit us! With our commitment to bringing families and yoga together, and our understanding that not all families look alike, we promise a quality experience no matter where you are at in your family, health or yoga journey.
How We Got Started
Our journey began in 2006 when we met at a Tupperware party in Maple Valley, and have been friends ever since! In 2013 we started talking about the businesses we wanted to have, and considered several franchises, nearly purchasing one together that created art programs for kids. But we wanted more flexibility than a franchise, and eventually Saralyn reached out to Boni again with an idea for a family yoga studio, and it turns out Boni had been thinking about a community yoga studio with more flexible times and beginner classes. We incorporated in March of 2015 and have been holding family classes and camps for young people in Maple Valley and the surrounding areas, and opened the physical studio in January 2017.
In spring of 2016, wanting a stronger background in yoga, Saralyn took her 200 hour adult teacher training, and in that process was reminded how passionate she was about having a physical location for families to come to. We took the leap and began looking for studio space. In December 2016, the space where Cedar River Mercantile had been was sitting open and recommended to us by Blue Dot Espresso Owner Leah Lynch. It was exactly the space we wanted, and the owner wanted us in right away. So the plans that we thought we had months to create turned into weeks - but we pulled together and opened in January!
We pulled together the teachers we wanted, who would help us create a space of inclusion, knowledge, and fun for adults and families alike. We love the space and the community we are creating!
Saralyn Whitney loves working with children and families and is committed to people having lives and communities that work. She has a passion for helping families reconnect through struggling times. The idea for YogaFamily came to her at a time in her life when her own family was working through emotional trauma on top of working a lot of hours. She wanted to have a place to do yoga with her son, so they could have quality time together, and an opportunity to bond in a safe healthy space. Since then, she has discovered all of the amazing things yoga really can do for both adults and young people, and is focused on creating a safe space for both to practice together.
Boni Love is a passionate yogi and mother of two. Throughout her career, Boni has founded and operated several businesses beginning with the Creative Garden Preschool from 1996-2004, followed by Jamerica Motors Auto Repair in Renton and Four Corners Auto Tech in Maple Valley. She received her degree in early childhood education was back in 1992 and has been working with children in an educational capacity in the 25 years since then. She has expertise in working with special needs children and facilitating trainings for parents. She is currently working as a Paraeducator in the Special Education Department for the Tahoma School District.
Yoga for Families
In our family classes, our mission is to connect families through yoga. Yoga is a great way to get movement and quality time together and learn poses, even if you have no prior experience. There will be elements of breathing, stretching, relaxing, partner poses, and mindfulness exercises meant to calm the mind and body for parents and young people.
Benefits of Family Yoga:
- Enhances teamwork and cooperation
- Strengthens communication
- Provides a chance to unwind and calm down
- Creates a shared experience to remember
Yoga for Young People
For our family and youth programs, we offer monthly themes that tie our classes together and give young people a quality learning and growing experience. Our co-founder Boni Love has 20 years of experience in childhood education and working with special needs young people. All of our teachers have specialized training for working with children, from a masters in childhood education to specialized yoga trainings for working with young people. Each quarterly lesson plan and monthly theme brings fun to classes with elements of play, songs, games and of course yoga poses. Even challenging poses, because young people love being challenged!
The physical and mental benefits for adults and young people are numerous:
- Increases physical strength
- Nourishes internal organs
- Promotes healthy structural alignment
- Improves circulation and digestion
- Promotes healthy heart & lungs
- Encourages sound sleep
- Teaches body awareness and acceptance
- Redirects scattered & impulsive energy
- Boosts lethargy and depressed states
- Increases the ability toconcentrate and focus
- Calms the mind and gives the senses a break